FARMINGDALE, Long Island (WABC) --A Long Island health department is looking for people who drank at a restaurant on five specific days in July, as they may have been exposed to Hepatitis A.
The possible exposure stems from a waitress at the restaurant Trento, located on Broadhollow Road in Farmingdale. She helped place garnishing on drinks, and that's how the virus could potentially be spread.
The Suffolk County Department of Health Services said anyone who consumed a beverage on these dates may ave been exposed to the virus: July 19, 23, 26, 29 and 30. There were 350 meals served on the 29th and 30th, but the waitress with Hepatitis A did not serve all of them.
Health officials said preventive treatment for Hepatitis A virus can help to prevent or lessen the severity of illness when given within two weeks of exposure.
As a result of the possible exposure, the SCDHS is offering free Hepatitis A vaccines to people who drank at the restaurant on July 29 or July 30, 2016.
The reason for not including the earlier dates is that they're not within the two-week window when the vaccine can be effective. Employees at the restaurant are also be offered the vaccine. Preventive treatment is not recommended for individuals potentially exposed before July 29, 2016. Those individuals should be aware of the signs and symptoms of Hepatitis A and contact their health care provider if they become ill.
Treatment is being offered at the Suffolk County Department of Health Services at 3500 Sunrise Highway, Building 200, Suite 124, Great River, NY 11739 at the following times:
Friday, August 12, Noon - 7 p.m.
Saturday, August 13, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.
The health department said people who were potentially exposed may also receive preventive treatment from their healthcare providers.
WHAT IS HEPATITIS A?
Hepatitis A is an inflammation of the liver caused by the Hepatitis A virus. The virus may be spread by consuming food or drink that has been handled by an infected person. It may also be spread from person to person by putting in the mouth something that has been contaminated with fecal material of a person with hepatitis A. Casual contact, as in an office or school setting, does not spread the virus.
The symptoms of Hepatitis A range from mild to severe and include fever, fatigue, poor appetite, nausea, stomach pain, dark-colored urine and jaundice (a yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes). Most people recover in a few weeks without any complications. The symptoms commonly appear within 28 days of exposure, with a range of 15-50 days. There is no specific treatment for Hepatitis A. Manage with supportive care.
Those who contract the virus are recoverable and do not have retain permanent effects.
Thorough hand washing after bathroom use and before, during and after food preparation can help to prevent the spread of this and other intestinal illnesses. Individuals exposed to Hepatitis A virus should receive Hepatitis A vaccination or immune globulin (IG) within two weeks of exposure to a person with Hepatitis A infection. Individuals who have been vaccinated for Hepatitis A or who have had the illness in the past are protected from Hepatitis A infection and have no need for preventive treatment. Pregnant women are urged to consult their doctors to discuss appropriate management.
For additional information or questions about possible exposure, call the Suffolk County Department of Health Services hotline at 631-787-2200 between the hours of 9 a.m. and 4 p.m.